Episode 128
October 18, 2022

B.S., Bras, and Being Bold

with Jane Fisher, Co-Founder and Co-CEO of Harper Wilde

About this episode

Joining the show today is Jane Fisher, Co-Founder and Co-CEO of Harper Wilde, on a mission to take the B.S. out of bra shopping. In this episode, Jane shares with us her journey from growing up in Florida, working as a hostess at a tourist restaurant, to studying business, to earning her MBA at Wharton where she came up with the idea for Harper Wilde. She talks about the challenges she's faced fundraising from investors, how she had to change her pitch, how to land on a good price point, and why she hires for culture fit first.

This episode is sponsored by

No items found.

In This Episode You’ll Hear About:

  • (3:12) More about Harper Wilde, founded by Jane Fisher and Jenna Kerner’s frustrations with the overpriced hypersexualized intimate apparel industry, inspiring them to launch Harper Wilde to change the conversation and create everyday bras that are ethically made, reasonably priced, and comfortable.
  • (4:40) What it was like growing up in Florida on a small island, with thoughts of becoming a vet, to getting a Psychology degree, to ending up in business
  • (12:06) How she ended up in the business department at McKinsey, without a lot of business background
  • (15:19) How she went to business school at Wharton and began to fall in love with the DTC world,  and how she got the idea for Harper Wilde
  • (18:00) Some of the first things she did to validate the idea, why she chose to try and disprove it, and realizing she couldn’t
  • (21:00) How they decided on the price point, and finding the sweet spot, and validating it with consumers, and if they could build the business with it
  • (25:00) Why it’s important for them to listen to customer feedback, and why they strive to build a brand that speaks to the whole market
  • (29:50) The go-to-market strategy, how they pitched their products, and the metrics they were looking for to see how they were growing
  • (31:50) What it was like fundraising from mostly male investors for a DTC bra company 
  • (37:40) How hiring has been, why they focus on culture fit first, and how to filter for culture
  • (42:00) How she’s grown into being a leader and why learning and innovating is important, and the biggest challenges she’s had to face in building a business
  • (46:00) The challenges in fundraising, learning how to be bold in confidence, and how to handle and work with investors
  • (1:01:00) The final advice she has for those looking to dive into entrepreneurship.

To Find Out More:

https://harperwilde.com/ 

Quotes:

“We're living in a world where it's cool to buy razor blades online, but I'm sitting here not replacing my bra after a decade.”

“I just got curious and started poking around and learning more about the industry to understand why there wasn't a broad company out there yet doing this.”

“We look at the customer and we've built a brand at a price point that speaks to the whole market.”

“Each new addition makes a huge difference to the culture, hopefully in a good way”

“We have three values: hunger, humility, and an ownership mindset.”

“Your gut is so often right if something feels off, it almost always is.”

“It's so much harder to let someone go and find someone new than it is to just wait a little longer and find the right.”

“At the end of the day, it's humans who are doing these jobs, and it's about the relationships with those people who are helping create the brand.”

“Investors should be selling you on why they should invest in you.”

“Be bold in confidence.”

“When someone says something can't be done or shouldn't be done, weigh it against your gut and what you know and are learning. Sometimes there's a lot to learn from that on why they're saying no. Oftentimes there is, but that doesn't necessarily mean it should stop you in your tracks and you should move forward.”

Read the transcript

More Episodes

Episode 134

Growth and Gardening

with Vanessa Dawson, Founder and CEO of Arber
Listen
Episode 133

From Selling Ice Cream to Skincare

with Vimla Black-Gupta, Co-Founder and CEO of Ourself
Listen
Episode 132

From Equestrian to 3x CEO

with Amy Shecter, CEO of Ever/Body
Listen